Cardinal Kids



At Cardinal Kids, we provide hope, encouragement, and healing to struggling children and families. We believe that each child and family are unique, therefore tailor treatment specifically to your child and family needs.

Cardinal Kids is a safe and protective environment for children to express themselves through play using the play materials in the room and the therapeutic relationship. In play therapy we enter into the child’s world of imagination, and together, partake on a journey of healing.

By giving your child the opportunity to engage in play therapy, you are providing a unique and age -appropriate opportunity for them to process and resolve stressful life events that may be fueling their unwanted behaviors.

Free the child’s potential, and you will transform him into the world.

–Maria Montessori



Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health (ages 0-6)

Parenting is a challenging job, especially when there are mental health concerns. Parents and caregivers deserve support in making sense of their child’s behaviors and responding in ways that promote overall healthy development.

Infant and early childhood mental health recognizes that development at this stage happens within the context of the child’s relationship with primary caregivers. The parent/child relationship is an interactional process in which both the child and parent bring their own emotions, behaviors, and beliefs. Infant and early childhood mental health interventions support both sides of this process to promote mental health and well being within the child and family.


Child Parent Psychotherapy (CPP)

CPP is an intervention for children birth to age six and their parents who have experienced some type of trauma and/or are experiencing mental health, attachment, or behavioral problems. Therapy includes both the child and parent or primary caregiver. The main goal of CPP is to enhance and strengthen the child/parent relationship in order to address the parent’s concerns and restore the child’s cognitive, behavioral, and social functioning. I customize my approach to the individual child and family situation, providing support to both the caregiver and child as we address the child’s needs. We will work together to build understanding, restore hope, and heal as a family.


Experiential Play Therapy (EPT)

EPT is a one-on-one play therapy model that helps children process adverse experiences. EPT is based on the idea that a child knows his or her own experience best and trusts the child to lead the play. A child’s toys are their words and play their language. Children are given access to a wide range of toys in the play room to actively play through their challenges, stressors, and/or trauma. In EPT, the therapist follows the lead of the child, takes on their perception of the world, and joins with them in order to help them process their unresolved issues, gain empowerment, and heal. Parents have an important role in EPT. At the beginning or end of each session the parent/caregiver is invited to discuss play themes and learn ways to support the child in the home setting.


Conscious Discipline

Conscious Discipline is an approach that provides a way of understanding emotions and behaviors based on current research about the brain within the context of development. It is an adult-first model that promotes regulation of the adult, in order to regulate the child and help them develop missing social, emotional, and communication skills. It offers tools and language that aid adults in supporting children with healthy social, emotional functioning. In an approach carefully tailored to each caregiver and child, we will use Conscious Discipline techniques to help you recognize and understand your child’s, and your own, emotional and behavioral states to help support change and healthy development.

Play Therapy St. Paul

Cardinal Kids is a proud partner of mnADOPT!

Since 1980, MN ADOPT’s mission has been to promote and support successful adoptions for all Minnesota children and families.  This mission is accomplished through a multitude of supportive and educational resources available to the adoption community. We are proud to partner with mnAdpot to help children and families grow and thrive!

To learn more about MNAdopt, go to

Heather Deveny-Leggitt

Child Therapist and Parent Coach

Heather is a Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker (LICSW) with a Masters in Clinical Social Work from the University of St. Thomas and St. Catherine University. Heather has more than 10 years experience working with children and families with diverse needs and backgrounds, including significant experience diagnosing and treating mental health issues in children from birth to age eight. Read more about Heather here. 

Heather Deveny-Leggitt Play Therapy St. Paul
Christine Waisner Play Therapy St. Paul

Christine Waisner

Licensed Associate Marriage and Family Therapist

Christine is a Mental Health Practitioner with a Masters of Science degree in Marriage and Family Therapy from St. Cloud State University. Christine has over 6 years experience working with children and their families in various capacities, including in-patient care, and in-home services. Christine focuses on building and maintaining healthy relationships for children and teenagers ages 6 and up as they grow into themselves Read more about Christine here. 

Alexander McLeod

Psychotherapy Intern

Alex is an graduate intern at Cardinal Psychotherapy and Cardinal Kids. He has a Bachelor of Science in Behavioral Sciences and is in the process of completing his Masters of Social work at St. Catherine University in St. Paul.  Alex has been providing direct services to children and families since 2014. He currently is seeing children and adolescents between the ages of birth and18. Read more about Alex here. 

Alexander McLeod
Play Therapy St. Paul
Play Therapy St. Paul
Play Therapy St. Paul

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